Organic Chemistry at Wits University, Johannesburg, South Africa.
Current research and areas of interest. See past and present students OR join the team! Published papers. Collaboratotions. Latest news Contact Willem. Curriculum Vitae of Willem van Otterlo.

Professor van Otterlo's research thrusts are mainly focused on the utilization of modern synthetic methodologies for the synthesis of functional organic molecules. The main research areas are briefly described below:

(a) The development of novel synthetic methodology

This thrust involves the utilization of organometallic based methodology for the synthesis of small molecules. During the last few years the research group has utilized ruthenium-mediated catalysis to facilitate ring closing metathesis and allyl isomerizations to produce highly functionalized and diverse molecular scaffolds.

(b) Synthesis of bioactive molecules and utilization of chemical biology

This area of research is aimed at using synthetic chemistry for the synthesis of biologically active natural products and their analogues. The biological targets of interest include HIV, hepatitis, malaria and various cancers. Recently the application of bio-probes to understand the interaction of these bioactive molecules with their targets has also been investigated. Crucial to this research area are strong, interactive collaborations with local and International research groups (see Collaborations).

(c) Synthesis of novel functional materials based on carbon

This research interest involves the synthesis of novel polymeric materials containing functionalized fullerenes, carbon nanotubes and carbon nanosperes using ring-opening metathesis polymerization and other methodologies.

Link to Stellenbosch University's Department of Chemistry and Polymer Sciences:


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